Smyrna 4th of July Celebration Draws Crowd After Storms

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Smyrna-4th-Fireworks-2023.
Fireworks. Photos by Town of Smyrna.

Hours before the Smyrna Independence Day Celebration was set to begin the skies filled with dark, threatening storm clouds, the winds ripped at trees and destroyed tents and the rains came along with lightning and power outages. After the violent storm, the clouds parted and provided the citizens of Smyrna and surrounding areas with a spectacular less-humid, clear evening of revelry and fireworks.

The band was cut because of all of the standing rain water and some of the vendor tents set before the storm were ruined with the vendors deciding to call it a day, but the food trucks and booths still had long lines of people and the playgrounds were filled with laughing children. Once again, the Smyrna Lions Club, dressed in their purple shirts, offered hot dogs and hamburgers for sale. A DJ cranked popular music and patriotic tunes throughout Lee Victory Recreation Park.

Set to begin at 5:00 p.m., the crowds came later than usual, but by 6:00 p.m. people were beginning to stream into the park with lots of tents set up back in the trees and blankets scattered over the lawns. Parking lots were filled with cars, with some of their occupants enjoying tailgate picnics and others filling their hands with pizza boxes or funnel cakes from one of the food trucks and taking them back to their group enjoying a picnic on the lawn.

Winding through the park were games, booths offering giveaways, and near the back of the park several inflatable slides for the kids. There was a buzz of excitement in the air. More so than other years. Maybe because of the earlier fury of the storm.

As dusk arrived, the cotton candy wagons appeared with toy lightsabers and light up guns for sale, filling the lawns with kids playing Jedi knight as the light faded and time for the fireworks arrived. Spirits were high. Patriotic clothing could be found on many of the revelers and festive banners were scattered around the area.

Carpe Artista provided the talents of Chloe Penny to sing the Star Spangled Banner, after the color guard presented the flag. Then the real show began. The fireworks.

“We wanted to do this early so the community could celebrate together,” said Reed, “but then they could celebrate on the 4th at home with their families on the actual day.”

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